Trash Can Makeover

After I installed my new office light feature, my trash can was looking a bit plain.

If I had taken the trash out, how would you have known it was a trash can? *cough cough* And yes, I am working on better blog photos as a 2012 Resolution.

Ok, so that’s a bit of a leap. It was plain before the light feature. I just couldn’t think of another way to start this post. It seemed like a good idea at the time. I picked up this trash can years ago at Target. It was around $6 because I can’t drop a stack of cash on a trash can. I just can’t.

Can we talk about the crazy price of some trash cans for a minute? $150+ for a trash can?!?!? I don’t get it. I was appalled when I first saw a price tag like that for a TRASH CAN. It’s something I dump yucky stuff in. Does anyone own one of these? Are they really that awesome? I promise I’m not judging anyone who buys these, I just don’t. Get. It.  Am I missing something that is just fantastic and worth the money for these?

What was I talking about? O right. Painting my cheapo trash can.

I’ve seen a lot of images floating around the World Wide Web of DIYers using painters tape on canvas to create some cool, modern art. One of my favorites is from Michelle's blog, Ten June.

See her post here.

I immediately realized that these paintings mimic the pattern of the veneer pendants and lanterns on my office light. Since I keep my trash can right in front of my light, it seemed fitting to have it coordinate! The canvas version is easy enough to adapt to anything!

See the similarities?

I took my plain old boring white trash can and taped out a random, criss-cross pattern using blue painters tape. I carefully smoothed out any bubbles or creases in the strips, which happen because of the curve of the can. The trick is to pull the tape taut as you wrap it around the can. I kept going until I had a pattern I liked.

I also stuffed the trash can with paper and taped off the inside edge to keep the inside paint free. No splatters!

Then, I hit it with a few coats of some leftover blue spray paint. It’s the same color I used on my desk lamp, the planters on our patio, and about a million other little things around the house.

*What? No pic of this part? I am a crappy blogger. Sorry to the new people!*

I made the mistake of letting the final coat dry (just for a few minutes) before pulling the tape off. Unfortunately, this pulled some of the paint off and messed up my clean lines. I’ve heard that green frog tape, as opposed to the blue painters tape I used, helps keep this from happening. I bought a roll but have yet to use it. I’ll let you know as soon as I do though!


Your best bet is to pull the tape off IMMEDIATELY after you paint your last coat. I’m not kidding when I say it only dried for a few minutes. Like 2 minutes. Ah well it’s just a trash can and I didn’t have to pay for any materials.

Luckily, this side came out well.

I think it fits in quite nicely with my office set up. What about you? Have you tried the painters tape art? Have you had better luck with the frog tape? Do you have a really expensive trash can? I kinda wanna know if people feel they’re worth the cost.

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